Proposed university village to rise up to nine floors

The residences will be built in five blocks, three of which will be rising to nine storeys and two will be rising to eight storeys

The proposed 673-room student residence, which will rise to nine floors, is set to cover an area of 8,780sq.m of land known as Ta’ Gjalpos between Mater Dei hospital and University of Malta.

The residences will be built in five blocks, three of which will be rising to nine storeys and two will be rising to eight storeys.

The project will also include a language school, a gym and office space, a mini convenience store, electronics store, pharmacy, stationery and post office, a multi‐faith room, study area and a launderette.

An underground carpark with a gross floor area of circa 18,700sq.m providing 441 car-parking spaces is also included.

The project will be “effectively visually linking” Mater Dei and the university, a project development statement presented by the developers states.

Earlier plans, which have now been superseded, had foreseen development of up to 12 storeys.

The proposed development will occupy a site known as Ta’ Gjalpos, off Triq San Ġwann Tal-Għargħar in Msida, with an area of approximately 8,780sq.m.

Most of the site is presently occupied by the abandoned  former Calamatta Garden Centre and an adjacent residence.

The local plan reserves the site for future expansion of Government Institutions.

The complex will be reached from the University by walking along the pavement adjacent to the International Maritime Law Institute and the European Studies premises.

Equally it can easily be reached by students arriving from Mater Dei Hospital.

The project is being undertaken by Vassallo Builders that in 2015 were awarded a tender to develop and operate the complex.

The tender had attracted only one bid for “the concession, design, building and operation of a University Residence and Community Complex” on land bought by the University of Malta in 2013. The bid was made by Vassallo Builders which has now formed a new subsidiary called Campus Residence Malta Ltd.

The University of Malta had previously purchased the site.

The lease agreement between the University and the owners of the Lija student residence will expire this year.

According to the PDS, the Student Residence Complex will facilitate mobility to and from the University of Malta campus.

“The convenience of living near the campus provides students easy access to numerous resources, such as mentors and academic advisors, the faculties, the library, computer labs, recreational facilities and student organisations”.